During the 1850s, tensions were rising in New Zealand between Maori tribes (known as iwi) and white Europeans (called the Pakeha) over the latter’s continuous encroachment on indigenous Maori land.This prompted the Kingitanga, or Maori King Movement, which sought to unite the iwi under one monarch.. A bitter and bloody civil war broke out during the reign of Alaafin Abiodun, and this caused a weakness in the central government of the empire. Each title is hereditary,not necessarily from father to son but within the same family. It is pivotal to note that the rich culture of the Yoruba’s cut across the shores of Africa and even to Southern America. They occupied the Western part of Nigeria and the system of government practiced was monarchical in nature regarded as centralized administration ruled by king with the assistance of other chiefs. Oyo Empire was very decentralized in nature and powers were distributed among several bodies to prevent authoritarianism. The Praetorian Guard Deposed and Proclaimed Emperors, and Auctioned the Imperial Throne. The Ogboni was considered to be very scared and commonly referred to as “The Mouthpiece of the Gods”; with their office headed by the Ifa Priest. The Oyo Empire had a complex system of government that operated on different levels. At its apogee, the empire stretched from the Niger westward to Pop and Dahomey. It is important to note that Yoruba pre-colonial administration was not highly centralized compared to Hausa/Fulani system. It began in the 1300s in the West African savannah north of the tropical forests where other Yoruba peoples lived. Old Oyo Empire was razed and demolished eventually in the year 1896. Meanwhile oyo empire was established on 12th century and it was collapsed in 18th century. The heart of metropolitan Oyo was the capital of Oyo-lle (which is known as katunga or old oyo or oyo oro). The Oyomesi were the voice of the empire, and represented the interests of the Oba and all the citizens of the empire. Some of the rulers aimed to use the wealth to further strengthen their military force; but the other half wanted to gain more wealth, and amass a fortune. The Alaafin was the apex ruler of the Empire. The Yorùbá people are a Niger-Congo ethnic group of southwestern and north-central Nigeria, as well as southern and central Benin. As Oyo’s wealth increased, so did its leaders’ political options; some wished to concentrate on amassing wealth, while others advocated the use of wealth for territorial expansion. There were seven members of the Oyomesi, ranked in the following order: Basorun, Agbakin, Samu, Alapini, Laguna, Akiniku, and Asipa. Here is the pre-colonial political administration of the Oyo empire. Are-Ona Kakanfo Afonja secured the help of the Islamic Fulani, thinking they would help him overthrow the Alaafin. Because of its wealth and military skills, Old Oyo was - and still remains - the most important and authoritative faction of all early Yoruba principalities. Following are ten of history’s greatest kingmakers. This great Empire was established in the 15th Century by Oranmiyan, grandson of Oduduwa (known as the father of the Yoruba’s). The Reign of Bashorun Gaa in Old Oyo Empire. Oyo Empire was well known for it’s industrial productions in brass making Because of its wealth and military skills, Old Oyo was - and still remains - the most important and authoritative faction of all early Yoruba principalities. Metropolitan Oyo was divided into six provinces divided evenly by a river. It was generally believed that the Yorubas migrated into Nigeria from upper Egypt under their powerful father, Oduduwa. The Yoruba Story, So true. The drums will … The Bashorun has the final say on the nomination of the new Alaafin, his power rivalling the king himself. When Alaafin Labisi took over the throne from the previous (late) Alaafin, Onisile, in 1750, he appointed Gaa as his Bashorun, the head of Oyomesi (7 hereditary kingmakers). The Yoruba Revolutionary Wars, otherwise known as the Yoruba Civil Wars (c. 1789–1880), were a series of conflicts that engulfed the Yoruba-speaking areas of West Africa in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. EARLY HISTORY: THE OLD OYO EMPIRE In the Oyo Empire, the Oyomesi were essentially the highest councillors of the state. It reached the height of its power in the 18th century. THE ALAAFIN: The Alaafin was seen as the political head of the empire. Something went wrong while trying to load the full version of this site. But, I thought the fallout between the Afonja and the Alaafin was not based on their thirst for power but on other unresolved issues. The Alaafin and Are-Ona Kakanfo Afonja developed serious issues. The bane of this aspiration is that, unfortunately, many who are supposed to be Kingmakers are struggling to be King. There were seven members of the Oyomesi, ranked in the following order: Basorun, Agbakin, Samu, Alapini, Laguna, Akiniku, and Asipa. Listen - not everyone (Kingmakers) are cut out to be King. By 1680, the Oyo Empire spanned over 150,000 square kilometers. Many do not recognize or identify their “callings” and then strive to operate under that grace and canopy, in which they are not called. It means traditional systems preceded the era of colonialism.From the same position, the … However, the pre-colonial Nigeria symbolises the methods or ways by which Nigerians govern themselves before the advent of colonialism. The Oyomesi was the supreme council and acted as watchdogs to the Alaafin. [William Allen, A Narrative of the Expedition sent by Her Majesty's Government to the River Niger, in 1841 (London, 1848), vol. The Oyo Empire grew to become the largest Yoruba state. Each title is hereditary,not necessarily from father to son but within the same family. The power of the alafin was checked by a group of leaders known as the Oyo Mesi, who appointed and reviewed the head of state and had the authority to condemn him to death by suicide if … Lesser war chiefs were known as Balogun, a title carried on by the soldiers of Oyo’s successor state, Ibadan. The Oyo Empire was a Yoruba empire of what is today Benin and Western Nigeria (including Southwest zone and the western half of Northcentral zone). Other vassal states took advantage of the breach and rebelled against the authority of the Alaafin. They were the judicial arm of the empire and were consulted for spiritual solutions, strategy, and prayers. Oyo Empire. The kingmakers for the Olubadan of Ibadanland are … Majority of this population is from Nigeria, where the Yorùbá make up 21% of the country’s population, according to the CIA World Factbook, making them one of the largest ethnic groups in Africa. The Oyo Kingdom, as with other states of the Yoruba people in the southern coastal area of West Africa (modern Nigeria), claimed descent from an exiled king of Ife (11-15th century CE). Interesting story. 13 min read. There were seven members of the Oyomesi, ranked in the following order: Basorun, Agbakin, Samu, Alapini, Laguna, Akiniku, and Asipa. The events that led to the secession and eventual fall of Oyo began towards the end of the 18th Century, (1793 to be precise). by Premium Times. The Afonja, hungry for power; began a series of attacks in the northern faction of Oyo. Oyo was no exception. The main growth of Old Oyo began during the second half of the century, when Alaafin Orompoto started using the wealth garnered from trade to establish a powerful and trained cavalry (army of horsemen). The Oyo Mesi developed as a check on the Alaafin’s power, preventing the Alaafin from being an autocrat; the Oyo Mesi compelled many Alaafin to commit suicide during the 17th and 18th centuries. Alaafin of Oyo, Iku Baba Yeye, Igba Keji Orisa, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III. The vast Oyo empire was known to be the largest and the most powerful of all Yoruba empires. The Alaafin was assisted in the administration of the empire by a group of seven chiefs, known as the Oyomesi. Each title is hereditary,not necessarily from father to son but within the same family. These attacks resulted in confusion, chaos, and political instability amongst the people. In the 1st century BC, Augustus did away with the increasingly dysfunctional and unworkable Roman Republic, replacing it with the Roman Empire, with himself at its head. 2. He was betrayed and killed by them instead. In the Oyo Empire, the Oyomesi were essentially the highest councillors of the state. Provincial forces were thus grouped into two armies, under the Onikoyi and the Okere for the east and west side of the river respectively. The Yoruba constitute about 44 million people in total. The Bashorun plays a vital role in the formation of the empire, and has the power to impeach either the Alaafin of the Oba’s. This site is best viewed in a modern browser with JavaScript enabled. 0. While the Baale’s were responsible for revenue generation. Below is the political administrative structure of the Oyo Empire. They also served as a check on the powers of the Alaafin, to prevent him from becoming tyrannical. Ever before the commencement of colonialism, the people of what later became known as Nigeria were living under different administration or political arrangements. They exercised legislative functions and was headed by the Bashorun. Following the conquer and subjugation of the Kingdom of Dahomey, Oyo’s wealth grew and the empire flourished for many years. Oyo like all African states on the coast engage in the slave trade. Together, these regions are known as Yorubaland. In the Oyo Empire, the Oyomesi were essentially the highest councillors of the state. In cultural history, kingmakers were highly influential in determining the fate of a king, such that all it took a king in Old Oyo empire to abdicate was to be handed a covered calabash by kingmakers. Oyo empire conquered dahomey and part of Togo. The powers of the Oyomesi were in turn, checked by the presence of the Ogboni Fraternity. Oyo empire was established by Oranyan who was sent to Benin upon request by the people of the Empire to assist them in the rulership of their Empire. Most Yoruba people speak the Yoruba language, which is tonal, and is t… Many empires signed a treaty with oyo empire from been attack and free trade routes. Unlike other Yoruba states, which were located in the forest area, Oyo was situated in woodland savannah. Goa. The empire was blessed with industrial brass making and as such amassed enormous wealth and military skill, the Oyo empire was very decentralized in nature and power was shared among several bodies to prevent authoritarianism, The paramount ruler (called Alaafin) oversees the affairs of the empire and he is being checkmated by the Kingmakers, (knwn as the Oyomesis), the Oyomesis were in turn … Oyo mesi can be regarded as kingmakers. The Benin Empire was “one of the oldest and most highly developed states in the coastal hinterland of West Africa, dating back to the eleventh century” The Edo people were the founders and settlers of the Benin Empire, but were initially ruled by the Ogiso (Kings of … Some of Oyo's institutions are clearly derivative of early accomplishments in Ife. Oyo rose to become the most important city state, surpassing Ife during the 1300s. Oyo subjugated the kingdom of Dahomey in the west in two phases (1724–30, 1738–48) and traded with European merchants on the coast through the port of Ajase (now Porto-Novo). The Alaafin was the apex ruler of the Empire. Truth Be Told. Oyo adopted the parliamentary system of governance, and a constitutional monarchy. They were also the kingmakers. Another factor that led to the fall of Old Oyo empire was that Old Oyo empire was too big to control, which attracted external attacks. The increase in the empire’s wealth brought about this conflict. lawizeeDecember 9, 2020. Although archaeology has yet to discover concrete connections between the various successive states of what is today Nigeria, oral traditions, such as those in the Kingdom of Benin (13-19th century CE), located just to the east of Oyo, tell of a king of Ife who not only sent a prince to rule other areas of the region but also sent a mast… Oyo Empire - Yoruba empire that arose in the 1600's in present-day Nigeria and dominated its neighbors for a hundred years. Oyo Empire was well known for it’s industrial productions in brass making The reason being that the Oba is not an absolute ruler and there is the principl… ... Mughal Empire: Muslim empire that ruled most of northern India from the mid-1500s to the mid-1700s; also known as the Mogul or Mongol empire. Although not autocratic in nature, (due to the established system of checks and balances), he was undoubtedly a driving force in the growth of the Empire. Allada in 1698. The Role of the Oyomesi in the Oyo Empire. Oduduwa the founder of ile-ife gave birth to one male which was known to be okanbi or Akanbi.Okanbi gave birth to seven sons and they were;Orangun,Ol owu,Onipopo,Onisabe,Oba of Benin (Ewuare) and Oranmiyan or Oranyan was said to be the last born. He was chosen by the Oyomesi. These were the periods of expansion in which the empire made incursions into the north of Nigeria and other neighbouring territories. Oyo Empire Nigerian dignitaries, 1841. Scholars have not determined how much of this structure existed prior to the Nupe invasion. The Alaafin is escorted by 3 eunuchs “Efa’s” to the afterlife. They were kingmakers and thus ensured that the Alaafin did not wield arbitrary powers. Try hard-refreshing this page to fix the error. The powers of the Alaafin were checked by a group of “Kingmakers” called the Oyomesi. They were also the kingmakers. The Old Oyo Empire was a vast and powerful force in the history of the Yoruba’s and Nigeria as a whole. Formation of the Oyo Empire. He added, “While the Otun Olubadan line is known as the civil line, the Balogun line is the military line. They were also the kingmakers. Oyo Empire(1600-1836) was a Yoruba empire, located in present day Nigeria and Benin. The two most relevant structures in Oyo-lle were the Alaafin’s palace and his market. 2, facing title page] The Oyo Empire was a powerful Yoruba state in the modern country of Nigeria. The Oba’s were the chief administrators of the Yoruba states; they exercised executive powers over all the people of the Empire. The palace was at the center of the city close to Oba’s market called ‘Oja-oba’. December 13, 2020. As with all nations, too much wealth often leads to strife, jealousy, and conflict amongst it’s rulers. 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